NewYork-Presbyterian nurses reach tentative agreement as nurses at other city hospitals still plan to strike


Nearly 4,000 union nurses at NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital have reached tentative agreement on a contract, while about 12,000 nurses at seven other hospitals will go ahead with plans to strike from 9 January.

Members of the New York State Nurses Association at NewYork-Presbyterian reached a tentative agreement just hours before their contract expired on Saturday “and a day after giving 10 days’ notice to strike “, according to a press release from the group.

The notice gives hospitals time to plan patient care in the event of a strike. Nearly 99% of union members voted last week to authorize the strike, which would affect seven hospitals in the city’s five boroughs.

Nurses at the remaining seven hospitals are expected to continue negotiations this week, according to the union.

“Nurses are expected to be back at the bargaining table all week at the other seven facilities,” the statement said. “They have sounded the alarm on the understaffing crisis that is putting patients at risk, especially during a triple outbreak of COVID, RSV and influenza.”

The union has argued hospitals are not doing enough to keep caregivers with patients, and they say hospitals need to invest in hiring and retaining nurses to improve patient care.

“Strike is always a last resort,” union president and nurse Nancy Hagans said in a news release last week. “Nurses have been through hell and back, risking our lives to save our patients throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, sometimes without the PPE we needed to protect ourselves, and too often without enough staff for safe patient care.”

Last-minute negotiations are the latest example of a growing trend for unions to take advantage of strike threats to improve working conditions. Unions representing train crew workers across the nation’s freight railways, mental health professionals and teachers have all been among the groups that have recently gone on strike or laid the groundwork to do so.


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